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I was talking with a friend the other day about how I feel naive sometimes when it comes to women and dating. That maybe sometimes women do make a pass at me and I don't realize it (though I doubt it). But he also said this: women can be cruel sometimes, especially if you give them attention, sometimes they just use you for that with no intention of anything more.
Now, my friend is not an inexperienced loser. He's in a committed relationship and has been for something like six years now. Probably going to marry his girlfriend once they get on solid financial footing. So while I hesitate to call anyone an "expert" on women or dating or relationships, I don't think we can call him an armchair warrior either. He's been around and knows at least something of the world.
But my question is this: assuming his assertion is true, then what's the point? If you can't be your genuine self and show interest when you're interested and instead have to play a game of sorts to ensure that the other person really does like you and isn't just looking for an ego boost, why bother with this whole thing? Why bother looking for companionship from someone who needed you to prove your worth to them? I might as well look for that in a robot or my dog if that's the case.
Why is it so hard to just get to know someone and then say "hey I like you" and have them either feel the same or not? Instead it's a game. They might not like you, but they like knowing that you like them. So they string you along, giving you a little bit of what you desire, but not the whole thing.
And none of this is referring to sex by the way. We're talking about a wholesome commitment to intimacy.
So that's my question. Why should I make myself vulnerable to people who are mostly assholes of some variation? Why shouldn't I put up walls higher than Constantinople? Why shouldn't I hide in a cocoon and avoid people hurting me? If you've grappled with this issue, what's your answer for it?